And they’re off!! Bonjour dear readers and greetings from my favourite Country, French France🇫🇷. We left Bakewell on the 1st of October to start our long journey south for the Winter. First port of call was The New Forest to party with our Summer workmates. That was fun and very good to see everyone again. Nursing the mother of all hangovers, we continued the next day, limping along the beautiful Dorset coast and into Devon, stopping only for junk food to ease the pain. We spent a night in Exmouth on the side of the estuary, stocked up on fresh fish at the harbour seafood store and other naughty goodies for the trip in M and S Food Hall then off we went to meet our Son, Matthew, at Ladram Bay. Now I’m not normally a fan of large ‘holiday camp’ sites but I do love it here. It’s quite upmarket and is in a really pretty setting. A spell of sunny warm weather made everything even better.
For the Motorhomers amongst you, Ladram does ACSI discounts out of high season. It has a nice pool with a sauna and steam room, crazy golf, a restaurant serving very good quality food, it’s own beach and nightly entertainment if you want it. Also heaps for kids to do if you have any of those!! The serviced pitches almost all have a sea view. There are even baths as well as showers! Genius! There are fabulous walks in every direction from the site. Otterton village with it’s Mill Tea Rooms are a short stroll (Devon Cream Teas to die for). There’s also a decent pub there.
We did a smashing walk into Sidmouth this visit. It was about 3 miles there, hugging the coastline. The views though, wow! The bushes along the path are bright with holly berries, sloes and crab apples. Very autumnal.
Sidmouth is a delight. We had obligatory fish and chips by the sea washed down with a pint of Thatchers Gold. Yummy! There are lots of lovely shops and eateries here. It’s all very quaint with its thatched cottages and brightly coloured flowers everywhere.
Budleigh Salterton in the opposite direction to Ladram is also very nice. Don’t make my mistake and walk your dog along the nudist end of the beach (yes, really, in the heart of sleepy Devon!!), unless of course, that’s your thing!! Poor Dylan didn’t know where to look! The Indian Restaurant in Budleigh is ace, really authentic food and great service. Highly recommended. Do book though, it’s extremely popular.
Our time with Matt passed far too quickly. Before we knew it, it was time to say our tearful goodbyes. It will be a while before we see our boy again as he is setting out on an adventure of his own next month. India and Asia, jolly good for him I say. I’ll miss him terribly. I know he’s mine and all that but he’s a really good kid (sob sob). The next morning we left for Folkestone and the Eurotunnel. We had a remarkably easy journey there. No traffic hold ups, not even around Gatwick! Arrived far too early, 10.30pm for a 5.50 am crossing. We thought they would turn us away but it wasn’t busy so they didn’t and we managed to get our heads down for a few hours very welcome kip.
And so, right on time, despite the threat of strike action on the froggy side, we drove into the sardine tin!! Twenty five minutes later, just giving me time to set the sat nav and put the required headlamp deflectors on, and we’re in France. It’s SO damned easy, just love the tunnel (to be fair I’d love anything that means I don’t have to fly)!!!
Come on then. Let the fun begin! Point the van at Honfleur. Always our first ‘go to’ destination. Will update you on arrival! Au revoir for now kids, It’s a beautiful sunrise 🌅. I’ll take that!